Konzept & Realisation: Rainer Dempf | © Viennale



We find the Viennale’s flame, transformed, in this edition’s image. “Flaming birds” – with that name, red flamingos are one of many endangered species and we see their representation more and more thanks to a campaign promoted years ago by an artist. Our flaming flamingo is not appealing because it is cute, but because it is hiding part of itself from us. And even though we can appreciate the sinuosity and agility of its outline, that framing only reveals a part of its shape. It evokes the filmic process, which works with what it includes and what it hides through the frame of a shot. This is a way, then, during the time of the festival, to remember the power of this medium , to play with it and with the possibility of finding all those other details that are not visible to us right now.

For the retrospective we chose an image from Robert Florey’s THE FACE BEHIND THE MASK (1941) – starring the extraordinary Peter Lorre – which gives an impression of the mystery, strangeness, seduction, and originality that permeate the vast selection of films we are showing in order to illustrate a historic – as well as particularly diverse and surprising – time in Hollywood’s filmic productions which even today is a source of inspiration for many contemporary filmmakers.